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Abuse of Power: David W. Lanier

Updated on November 24, 2017

The Stats

  • Name: David W. Lanier
  • Occupation: Judge
  • Crime: Sexual Assault, Violation of Civil Rights
  • Sentence: Prison, 25 Years

Judge David W. Lanier had his hands on the pulse of the law in Dyersburg, Tennessee for decades. Unfortunately, he also had a penchant for placing his hands in places where they weren't invited.

David W. Lanier
David W. Lanier

According to Dyersburg police investigator, Joey McDowell, "He handled adoptions, child custody cases, divorces. If your kids got in trouble, you'd see him in juvenile court. And when you died, he probated your will," "Cradle to grave, he controlled everything."

Back in the late 80's, through the 1990s Judge David Lanier was busy sexually assaulting women from courthouse personnel to plaintiffs whose cases he presided over.

People openly referred to the judge as "The Grabber."

One woman, Patty Wallace, relayed an incident about a time when Judge Lanier fondled and groped her in open court, and other women came forward with stories of how he touched them in chambers.

In one particularly disgusting event, Vivian Archie, told of a time when she came to Judge Lanier to be interviewed for a secretarial position.

During the interview, the good judge pinned her down, pinched her throat and neck, and ordered her to perform oral sex on him.

Other women came forward with similar stories that all amounted to the same thing, Judge David Lanier is a sex pervert.

At one point his sentence was overturned by a constitutional loophole, but justice and common sense soon prevailed and he was sent back to prison.

From behind prison walls the perverted judge told stories of a conspiracy theory, and that the women, the prosecuting attorney, and the FBI were all out to get him. True to form, he denied everything.

From behind prison walls the perverted judge told stories of a conspiracy theory, and that the women, the prosecuting attorney, and the FBI were all out to get him. True to form, he denied everything.


Today, the good judge is apologetic to his victims, but he seeks to be released because he and his supporters believe that he is serving too much time for his crimes.

According to Lanier, "Nowhere in the world is anyone being punished like I am for what I did," he said. "The federal government, the FBI, the judges, they are all trying to keep me from pursuing my rights. Twenty-five years is a death sentence for me."

Judge David Lanier is serving out his time at the Forrest City Federal Correctional Complex. He is 78 years old, and he should be released in March of 2018. According to his Facebook Fan Page (can you believe that?), some of his supporters are calling his imprisonment a "Terrible Injustice."

According to the woman he raped, Vivian Archie, "He took away my rights. He made me feel like nothing."

What a horrible manner for a judge to behave. No one will ever know how many other women this sick man has assaulted. Most intelligent people realize many victims of sexual assault never come forward due to shame, humiliation, and in Judge David Lanier's case, fear of retribution from someone who was in nearly absolute power.

I hope he serves every last second of his sentence.

What Do YOU Think?

Do You Think Former Judge David W. Lanier Should Be Released Early?

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    • Rachelle Williams profile imageAUTHOR

      Rachelle Williams 

      14 months ago from Tempe, AZ

      "Power to Hurt" sounds like a book I would want to read. Thank you for introducing me to the book, and thank you for your feedback.

    • profile image

      allison roscoe 

      14 months ago

      I just finished reading POWER TO HURT by Darcy O'Brian. I was appalled by Lanier's despicable behavior and complete lack of regard for any other human being. He is an unbalanced self centered narcissist...much like Donald Trump. Thank goodness the Supreme court put him back in prison,where I hope he dies.

    • profile image

      xcon 

      21 months ago

      there is a big differance between soliciting and rape and the feds can makes these girls life hell ive been locked up with rapist theives killers hackers and he fits none of these profiles the people voting agaist him dont know the story the real story they railroaded him and i talk to him for years and got to know him good i wrote a articale about my first hand experiance with him over the years and it somehow dissapeared so this time im make it short solisiting the willing if far from rape untill they are facing time or have something to gain hes a man not that it makes it right but they got convicted him on the wrong charge not that it m akes it right but the justice system is flawed bad and if everyone knew the real mr. lainer like i do 90% would want him out while the other 10% would want him in. a lot might not like it but its the truth and by the fed being able to just ruin anyoness life as they please i think a govermental santion should be put over the goverment one body of 12 officials including the govener of that state in all fifty states to have access to all goverment information and all 50 states vote to govern to goverment so they people will have a say again and today we dont which will lead to a dictatiorship its comming if we dont preserve the constitution and make sure the goverment cant overthrow there public we have a right to stop that. things need to start comming into play before the damage is irreversible.

    • profile image

      Armywifestrong 

      2 years ago

      RE: " DAUGHTER " I can sympathize with your statement, " what do you know ". Sometimes you have to accept the most difficult of circumstances. There is absolutely no reason and way all those women lied. No woman wants to tell strangers that she was made to perform oral sex or any type of sex act for that matter. The judge also FLED.... and it wasn't because he didn't want to go to jail.. I am going to go out on a limb and do what I never, and... ASSIME... that you are an intelligent woman ? Yes ? With your father being a judge and again...ASSUMING.... that he would not be with a woman who wasn't equally as intelligent and yet again.... I'm ASSUMING you are just as intelligent . With all that said you know... You know that all those women are part of a conspiracy theory and conspiring federal prosecutor and whom ever else was involved. I empathize, I truly do and I'm very sad you had to go that he is guilty and deep down you know the same. I hope you will eventually admit to yourself that he is guilty and deserves to be punished. That doesn't mean you love him any less or Amy different it just means you've accepted what he's done and what and who he is. God bless. I don't mean to make you angry though I would imagine you would be... I would be if it were me. Take care .

    • profile image

      Gloria 

      3 years ago

      This man did a lot more than molest women. He had an iron fist in this county for yrs. Very corrupt. He is where he belongs.

    • profile image

      daughter 

      5 years ago

      what do you even know?

    • fpherj48 profile image

      Paula 

      5 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

      Rachelle....This true tale is horrifying, but I'm not at all shocked or surprised. Many individuals in powerful positions, have "issues" and mental problems, just as those who are average Joes. The seriousness of this, is that his power allowed him to commit his heinous crimes, much longer and to many more victims, than had he been an average citizen.

      The mistake most of us make (and I have been guilty of this myself) is believing that there is true justice or even fairness, anywhere at all, in this screwed up country of ours.

      You did an excellent job relating this story. Very interesting and eye-opening. ..UP++

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